Question

What notice to give when selling a house

by | 28 Feb 2018

Hi, I rented my house whilst building another next door. The tenants (previous neighbours who we were friendly with) were aware of the building plans and rented at a below market rent. This was over 3 years ago, originally an ast now periodic. Building work is finished and both houses have been valued. The tenant would like to sign another 6-12 mth tenancy with the view to purchasing in the future. The tenant is self employed, often late paying the rent and company house records show a loss so fair to say unlikely to secure a mortgage (previously bankrupt too). We would like to sell the house (to the tenants if they can afford) but, (if not) are happy for the tenants to stay until the house is sold and close to completing. Obviously this is beneficial to us as we have rent covering the mortgage during the sale. I don’t know how to handle the notice. Should I serve a Section 21 (4) (a) giving two months notice and leave the house empty thereafter until completion or is there a way to specify that the date to vacate will be notified in the future but not with less than 2 months notice, for example. Many thanks

Answer

3 Comments

  1. guildy

    It’s impossible for anything that specifies an exact date and that would be it. Any notice would need a court order if they didn’t go.

    Just to clarify, is the tenancy in the name of the individual or in the name of the company? (You mention about the tenants company house records which is why we ask).

    • de-ann

      Hi, thanks for your reply. Sorry if I confused things. The tenancy agreement is in two individual’s names, one of the two tenants is self employed. I mention their company accounts only to explain why I don’t expect they are realistically going to be able to purchase the house.

  2. guildy

    Okay, just wanted to be sure.

    All you can really do is serve a section 21 (2 months notice) and then see what develops.

    You don’t have to seek a court order as soon as the notice expires so you will have a little room for movement although of course the tenants could just leave on or before the date specified in the notice.

    Where the tenancy (or last renewal) was granted on or after 1 October 2015, the notice must be used within six months from when it was served otherwise a new one will be needed. If it was before that date, there is no time limit for the notice until October this year when the rules apply to all tenancies.

    Please see here for the section 21 notice.

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